World News

Crude oil flat after recent pullback

Crude oil flat after recent pullback

The Brent Crude Oil Index went as high as $75.27 and is now trading at $74.68 per barrel.

US crude inventories rose by 1.1 million barrels in the week to April 20 to 429.1 million, according to a report by the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday. Recall that the cartel, along with Russian Federation and some smaller producers, cut output by about 1.8 million barrels per day (bpd) at the beginning of 2017.

"Looks like OPEC is at it again".

The United States has until May 12 to decide whether to quit a nuclear deal with Iran and reimpose sanctions against the third-largest producer in the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries, tightening global supplies. Were prices to approach $100, the flood of new supply could be dramatic, particularly if the Trump administration's threats of "consequences" meant some form of additional support for further exploration and production.

The U.S. Energy Information Administration put the four-week moving average of total production in the Lower 48 states at 9.98 million barrels per day, 15 percent higher than this point previous year.

At 10:20 am Singapore time (0220 GMT), ICE June Brent crude futures were down 11 cents/b (0.15%) from Tuesday's settle to $73.75/b, while the NYMEX June light sweet crude contract inched down 7 cents/b (0.10%) at $67.63/b.

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"Crude prices are now sitting at the highest levels in three years, reflecting ongoing concerns around geopolitical tensions in the Middle East, which is the source of almost half of the world's oil supply", ANZ bank said on Tuesday. "No good and will not be accepted!". That neatly ignores the massive transfer of wealth from consumers to producers that occurs at higher prices, and if higher prices are only achieved by artificially constraining supply rather than market forces, there is little justification for allowing that transfer to take place.

Macron's visit to Washington comes at a critical time, with Trump facing a May 12 deadline on whether to continue to waive USA sanctions on Iran.

Looking at USA crude oil stocks, the most recent EIA figures (April 18) showed falling crude oil stocks and falling gasoline inventories.

The ETF's YTD performance is 17.32%, the 1 year is 44.58% and the 3 year is -26.01%.

WTI was available at 80-90 cent premiums delivered to Italy's Augusta, well below offers of Azeri BTC at a premium of $1.60 a barrel, according to trading sources. When reimposed, US sanctions will require buyers of Iranian crude to cut purchases within 180 days, he said.

One of the factors limiting the oil rally is rising US production. Analysts were looking for a draw of between 1.047 and 2.648 million barrels.


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